- Food Lovers Club

February – for Food Lovers

As February draws to its close, we top up our ‘food loving’ nuggets of inspiration, environment views, news and tasty tips. The environment and sustainable farming are close to our hearts as you will see. One Pot wonders fill us heartily. And a wine review will wash it all down delightfully.


One-Pot Wonders


It is great fun getting all the pans out, sparkling in the kitchen lights, waiting to play their part in each intricate part of this evening’s supper. That’s a fun afternoon in the kitchen.

Sometimes thought, it is far nicer to put your feet up, perhaps watch an afternoon of Six Nations Rugby, read the paper, or just snooze in front of an old romcom.

The one-pot gives you the time you deserve.

One-pot recipes are usually pretty straight forward, balancing ingredients, flavours and textures that gradually fill the house with wonderfully inviting aromas. The ingredients simmer together, creating a harmony of deep and often complex flavours.

Lamb Minted Hot Pot

This creates a harmony of classic ingredients – carrots, onions, potatoes and mushrooms. Fry off the onions with herbs or spices.

A combination of fennel and cumin seeds dry fried before the onions and oilseed rape gives a complimentary intensity that make a tasty change from herbs. Then, literally add the rest, just covering the ingredients with an appropriate stock.

We’ve opted for lamb mince in this recipe which can be easily rolled into meatballs and browned off before going into the stew. Mince as opposed to diced shoulder will reduce the cooking time.


Enrich the gravy with a good dollop of our Real Tomato Ketchup and a couple of teaspoons of garden sweet Mint Sauce. They add depth to the flavours already developing.

Hearty Sausage CassouletNot quite a ‘one-pot’ because this is best served with rice or mashed potatoes but, it is a simple way to make a great family supper. See Andy’s recipe – HERE.

Tray baking a supper is a simple culinary art, such as this:

Wholegrain Mustard Sausage Tray BakeCHEF’S TIP 

A tray bake does everything a one-pot does but without the gravy. Getting all the ingredients cooked within the same time frame is the art.

Carrots, potatoes (waxy), swede, fennel, parsnips – whatever you fancy. Cut them to the same size for even cooking or, if you know something takes longer to bake in your oven, cut it slightly larger.

Scatter with thyme and, rosemary; spread a few dollops of our Cider & Horseradish Mustard, then drizzle of English rapeseed oil.

That’s another tasty supper in the pot!

Sustainable Farming - yes please.


In Rick’s (MD & Food Lover) own words:

“Our planet is precious, we don’t own it, we share it and have a responsibility to protect it.

We are facing a monumental plastic problem on a global scale and our responsibility to do more when it comes to reducing our plastic usage has not gone away. We all have a responsibility to abolish waste in the world and that is our target at Stokes Sauces.”

…which is why, when we team up with growers, producers and livestock farming friends, it is a joy when they sing off the same sustainable page.

Jonny & Dulcie Crickmore are third generation dairy farmers and cheese producers at Fen Farm Dairy. We talk more of their farming values and delightful cheese making later, but focus on their shared passion for sustainability for now.In their own words:

We believe we have a responsibility to be excellent stewards of our planet, the land we farm and the delicate ecosystems that live here.”

Sound familiar?

Amongst a number of fantastic projects, they run a 200kw solar panel system with battery storage, on the roofs of their barns. Combined with other on-farm renewable energy sources, this new system brings Fen Farm’s farming and food production to around 70% renewable energy self-sufficiency.Running underneath the barn in which Jonny and ‘the girls’ are smiling (above), they laid 1500 metres of water pipes into a bed of sand. With digestive help from the girls, this heats water for use in the cheese and butter production buildings, as well as the parlour, office building, houses and other buildings on the farm.

Three years ago, heat exchangers were installed on compressors throughout the farm, harnessing heat and using it to cool milk and heat the preheat tank.

That’s all the ‘moos’ from Fen Farm today !

Wine with that? Monthly Food Lovers' Wine Review


Cabalié 2023

This sumptuous red has garnered over 5,500 5-star online reviews (BBC Good Food Wine Club) … and it’s easy to see why.

It is silky smooth, richly spiced, and winner of umpteen Gold Medals. No wonder it’s our all-time re-ordered red for the BBC Wine Club in association with Laithwaites.

From deep in southern France, there are no ceremonies with this ‘table’ wine, just a large glass and a few friends. This old-vine gem blends raspberry-rich Grenache with herby Syrah and Carignan. Simply delicious.

[Our thanks to Laithwaites and BBC Wine Club where you can purchase the wine – HERE.]

What makes a Great Burger


Usually associated with high street fast food, the ‘burger’ has developed into a balanced, quality meal of fine ingredients served in a bun.

“Burgers are a blank canvas for endless flavour possibilities”
Jamie Oliver.

Jamie really sums the burger up so well. It can be anything, any combinations that play an intriguing dance across your taste buds.

Nduja Beef Burger:

The main image is slow-cooked beef spiced with nduja paste, torn and served with red slaw, fried pickles, and Stokes Burger Relish, a salsa-style relish of tomatoes, onion, peppers and chilli.

Beef with Smoky ChunchThe key to this new burger creation from Andy … is the crunch – texture. The ground beef patty smothered in our rich Red Onion Marmalade, topped with bacon and crispy nachos with melted smoked cheese poured over them – wow. Nice one Andy!

Pulled Pork Burger:Pulled Pork is easily available in most stores and delis. Here, it is balanced with smoked cheese and the crunch of crispy onions. The smokiness of the cheese is further developed with Stokes Original BBQ Sauce – sweet, thick and smoky.

Fish Burger:And it doesn’t have to be a meat-based burger. Here, crispy air-fried goujons of cod sit on our Tartare Sauce and a vibrant bed of lettuce. The ciabatta makes a crusty change to burger or brioche buns.

Portobello Mushroom Burger:Finally, of course, it can be a vegetarian burger. Here, the ‘meaty’ Portobello mushroom is the star. There’s so much you can do with it, such as scoop out some of the stem, fill the gap with vegetarian cheese, bake it then stack it. Stokes Chilli Jam adds a sticky relish oozing with flavour from the sweet chilli peppers and red peppers.


The Sunday Roast


We practically have a love affair with the quintessentially British Sunday Roast. Families gather across four of the Six Nations, from Scotland, Ireland, Wales and England.

This time-honoured meal has been passed down through generations, with its origins deeply embedded in England’s rich medieval history.Roasting root vegetables with whole shallots, thyme and horseradish give you an easy vegetable medley, packed with natural flavours.

After church on Sundays, villagers gathered around large communal ovens where scavenged, hunted or reared meat joints were roasted.

Youngsters called ‘spit boys’, turned the meat, mainly oxen and boar, so that it was evenly cooked and basted in its own juices.They say a picture paints a thousand words, se we’ll let this one inspire your roasties – it does exactly what it says on the ‘jar’.Chef, Andy has created a deliciously minty Salsa Verde to accompany a roast leg of  lamb. See and enjoy the recipeHERE.Nothing is wasted with a Sunday Roast. The meat slices into wonderful sandwiches, or roughly diced into a Monday curry. The vegetables (all of them) fry off in a Bubble & Squeak (particularly good with our Real Brown Sauce and a fried egg on the top!!!).Be adventurous with leftover roast beef – Beef Nachos with Stokes Burger Relish. Delicious cheesy nachos with steak, avocado, jalapeños, red chillies, chopped tomatoes, topped with sour cream and our salsa-style relish.


Chef’s Tips & Recipes are for:


– don’t miss a thing

Join today, and you qualify for special discounts.

Featured Product - English Cheese



British Cheese. Did you know that we produce more cheese than France and there are over 700 named cheeses made in the UK.One such producer, Fen Farm Dairy, has combined English climate with French cattle to create an award-wining English Brie. Baron Bigod is a distinctive Brie that has become a beloved menu staple of top chefs and is known to frequently grace the tables of Royalty.

Their Montbeliarde herd were hand-picked by Jonny from small farms in the French Jura and are very well suited to their relaxed Suffolk lifestyle and climate.Baron Bigod is a handmade from the warm morning’s milk of our Montbéliarde cows, using traditional pelle-a-brie ladles and a cave-like ageing process.

For most of the year round, you’ll find the girls grazing freely on the lush and wildlife-rich marshes of Stow Fen, in the beautiful Waveney River Valley.

Here, they keep peaceful company with otters, kingfishers, egrets, herons, marsh harriers, water voles and a myriad of other water meadow creatures.Barncliffe Blue is an unctuous soft blue, made from the fresh milk of a neighbouring herd of Meuse-Rhine-Issel cows.

As a breed, the Montbeliarde won’t give very much milk and are not pushed to do so, but the milk she does give is protein rich, flavoursome and perfect for cheesemaking. Some of the best French cheeses are made exclusively from Montbeliarde milk, including Comte, Vacherin Mont D’ Or and Reblochon.

...and with your Cheese - the Chutney


The Cheeseboard Collection is the perfect gift for someone special who is partial to a little cheese and wine. It contains 4 of our most popular relishes and chutneys, each in our new 215g jars, packaged in a stylish new gift box.

This ‘perfect with cheese’ gift set contains the following products:

Fig Relish – is a sweet fig relish with a slight tartness, brimming with dried figs (60%) and made with cider vinegar and molasses for a great complement to cheese.

Chilli Jam – is a ‘must have’ delicious sticky jam for cheese that is just oozing with flavour from the sweet chilli peppers and red peppers. Particularly good with mature cheddars and soft brie.

“There is a good base of fruity sweetness and a touch of garlic and acidity … pitch perfect on the palate.” Said the Great Taste Awards Judges.

Red Onion Marmalade – we take our time caramelising red onions in sticky black treacle and rich balsamic vinegar for this full flavoured deliciously sweet sauce.

Sticky Pickle – is a scrumptiously sticky pickle with our own unique blend of vegetables in a sweet and spicy sauce made with molasses and black treacle. Yum!

“This is a spicy, tongue tingling pickle which we really enjoyed. They said.

Order your Cheeseboard Collection – HERE.

Making Mustard


The versatile mustard plant belongs to the same family as broccoli, sprouts, kale and cauliflower. The husks of the seeds are pressed to produce mustard oil, it’s the seeds which are most commonly used in cooking.

Making your own mustard is easier than you might think – it’s as simple as crushing the seeds with a liquid and adding a preserving agent such as vinegar, sugar or salt – but there are many variables to create different strengths and flavours.

But, of course, using one of Stokes mustards is easier still – HERE.

First the seeds; you have white (or yellow), brown and black to choose from. The white seeds are slightly milder, brown are punchier and black are the most potent. You can grind them right down to achieve a smooth mustard, or just crush them lightly for a textured wholegrain mustard, depending on the desired consistency.

Many different liquids can be used, including water, vinegar and lemon juice; or alcohols such as beer or wine. The famous Dijon mustard originally used verjus (a type of unripe grape juice) which rose to prominence thanks to its tart flavour that gave a smooth, less acidic finish.

The heat of the mustard depends on the temperature of the liquid used when blending. English mustard (the hottest type) is made with cold water, whereas American ‘yellow’ mustard is brought to the boil, which gives it a milder flavour, with plenty of turmeric added for that vivid colour.